Diwali – The name itself casts a magic spell and makes our eyes sparkle. Color, illuminated everywhere, gifts, fire crackers, colorful foods and lots and lots of fun and mirth define this festival. And, boy! How we Indians love to take pride in our culture on this day! But, if you thought that Diwali is the only festival of light in the whole wide world, then you would be mistaking a bit. Yes, we admit that it is the grandest of them all, but there are quite many festivals of light held around the world which are indeed very cool and pleasant. Let’s take a look at some of those—
7. Aomori Nebuta Matsuri
Japan is one country that celebrates all their festivals with pomp and lights in myriad hues. However, if we had to pick one of them, then it would of course be this festival—Aomori Nebuta Matsuri.
In this festival, colorful parades are held across the Aomori city where huge nebutas
or colorful floats are illuminated from inside while traditional Japanese music is played in the background. The ambience and the festive feel is sure to make you intoxicate with pride and joy!
6. Las Fellas
Like other festivals in Spain, this festival too is very unique and showcases yet another fun filled part of Spain’s culture. It is a fire festival that commemorates a feast day given in honor of St. Joseph, the patron saint of the carpenters.
The festival marks the end of the evil, known as ninots
and made of card board and wood, by ravishing them in fire. Well, that sounds much like our own Dusshera
, ain’t it?
5. Festival of Lights, Lyon
France celebrates Lyon’s heritage with a festival of lights that spans over four days. Much alike Diwali, the citizens of Lyon illuminates their window seals with traditional candles and decorates the whole city in a pompous and innovative way each year.
The celebration provides the young and talented designers and architects as well as the old and famous ones to showcase their talents in a whole new way every year!
If food, candles and prayers mark the beginning of Diwali, then Hanukkah does so too but in their own sweet way. Hanukkah is one of the most important celebrations of the Jews when they commemorate the rededication of their holy temple in Jerusalem.
Spread over eight days, they celebrate this day by lighting a candelabrum with nine branched Hanukkah. Along with this, a table full of traditional Jewish delicacies set the stage for lovely long week!
3. Festival of Lights, Berlin
One of the newest additions to the list of celebrations, this festival of lights was started by Birgit Zander in 2005, and since then, it has turned into a famous tourist attraction.
Celebrated in October, in this festival, the whole of Berlin is transformed into multihued illuminated artifacts which are indeed beyond words to express. This, along with a series of cultural events, conventions and a great spread of traditional delicacies make it a special event.
2. East Pretoria Festival of Lights
Thanksgiving was never as beautiful and fun as here in Pretoria where the solemn and elegant festival is celebrated with fun and mirth. This two month long festival hits off in November and continues till 1st
Illuminated floats, colorful parades and a lot of singing and dancing mark this festival. In fact, there are many laser light shows and indoor winter carnivals held too during this festive season. In fact, this spirited festive season holds as many as over 100s of different cultural events and programmes.
1. Lantern Festival of China
Celebrated in the first lunisolar month of the Chinese lunar calendar, this lantern festival of China is known by many names like Shangyuan
festival or the Yuanxiao
festival. This festival marks the end of the Chinese New Year.
Primarily red in color, these lanterns are intricately carved and made, and are found hanging literally everywhere throughout the country—from houses and buildings to pavements, offices, parks, everywhere. Although numerous legends are associated with this festival, the fact that it is one of the most colorful ones around make this festival a must-attend in one’s lifetime.